Socialisation is one of the key things that a well balanced puppy has to learn. This means giving the puppy lots of lessons, and gradually upping the anti. There are a number of suitable places and Anya has visited a variety including dog friendly pubs, supermarket car parks and farmers markets.
We are very lucky that there are a series of farmers markets in Hampshire. The first farmers market we visited was a small one at the end of the day. Obviously a small puppy is a very big draw and you don’t want to scare them with lots of people coming to say “hello”. The second market was a much larger one, but again we chose to go at the end of the day. She said hello to more people and again had a lovely time. For Anya’s third visit to a farmers market, we went around lunch time when it was a lot busier.
Anya (and her mother and great aunt) had a wonderful time meeting lots of people. It was lovely to see how many children have been taught to ask permission before stroking a dog. It was also interesting that many adults didn’t show the same respect for them.
One of the stall holders remarked how much she had grown since her first visit to the market and how much more confident she was – all a result of the hard work that we have been doing with her.
One important thing to remember is that meeting people is hard work for a puppy. It is very important to ensure that they get a break when they are tiring. After this break, Anya was more than ready to meet her public for a few more minutes before we came home and she crashed out.